Stipend FAQs

as of 5/21/20


The majority of questions below are directly related to stipend opportunities that are available to residents who commit to teaching four years in the areas of: special education, math, and science. 

Do you anticipate that the majority of the districts that contract with the TCSJ Residency program, are primarily looking for applicants that are committed to the special education placement? No, not necessarily, but for Tracy Unified and SJCOE-SPED, this is true.

I would like to know if my chances of getting into the program will be decreased if I decide to pursue a Multiple Subject placement. Not at all. 

Do we have to accept these new requirements in order to be in the program or can we can deny the benefits and still be in the program? You can still be in the program whether you take the stipend opportunity or not.

If we are accepted into the program and deny the benefits, are our chances of being hired with our assigned district be lowered since we denied the benefits/do not desire a special education position? Not at all. Tracy Unified and SJCOE-SPED are the only districts who are seeking special education residents only.

I understand that I would be responsible for paying the tuition on my own if I go that route. Can you please confirm the tuition will remain at $11,690? This is correct. We also have payment plans that will allow you to defer the majority of your tuition to when you are employed with a district.

I read on the website a couple months back that the 2019-2020 resident students got a ~$9,000 stipend from Stockton. Did they also have to teach special education for 4 years after as well or is this a new policy change because of the current budget cuts schools are experiencing? This change from last year is partially due to budget cuts (the district isn’t in a position to offer additional funds at this time) as well as grant funding stipulations that became new to us last week.

Does this also affect River Islands Technology Academy, since it's a charter school?   River Islands is committed to offering $3000 regardless of what your choice is after the residency year. This is money that is coming from their school to support residents, not from any grant funding. 

If I decide to go the special education route, and I do not enjoy teaching special education, what would be the stipulations of not continuing on for the next four years in a special education classroom? For example, would I have to pay a fee to the program? You would have to pay back a portion of the grant. If you taught for one year in special education, you would pay back 75% of the grant funds; if you worked two years, you would pay back 50%; if you worked three years, 25%, etc.  


Do I receive the stipend at the beginning of the program or at the end of the 4 years after teaching special education? People who commit to teaching for four years after they complete their credential would receive the stipend in two payments: one in December and one in June. In Tracy, I believe you receive the stipend in the beginning, in one lump sum.

Do I have to complete the teaching of special education for the 4 years at the same school I am placed? Same district? San Joaquin County? Another state? If you take the funds from Tracy’s grant (it’s separate), they will want you to commit to Tracy. With any of the other districts, you would commit to teach in a special education placement in California.

 My previous understanding was that the 8 districts I chose on the Google form would extend offers to me, and from there I would get to choose based on the grade level and school. In the interview, Tracy addressed that they only place Residency students in special education settings, so I appreciate their transparency. Will I still receive all of the offers from the districts prior to making my decision about accepting the terms of the grant program with the special education teaching? Yes you will receive offers from all of the districts interested in placing you. The school placement and grade depends on the master teachers that the district has available. Because Tracy is operating under their own grant, their situation was a little different from the beginning. The other districts are looking for committed teachers regardless of whether residents choose special ed or general ed employment after the completion of the program.  

I already have a master’s degree, but do you know if I would make more money if I had 2 master’s degrees? If so, I would be interested in pursuing a master’s in education. Two masters degrees will not automatically allow you to earn more money, however additional units do allow you to earn more money. It would be helpful to research districts’ salary schedules to see how units affect pay over time.

If I am accepted into the Residency program, and I go the special education route, is there a contract example you could send me? I would like to read the fine print to ensure I understand what is expected of me in advance. We are in the process of revising that and will have it available within the next week.